Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

What are the chances of being an astronaut?

  1. Dec 2, 2005 #1
    Well I graduatd high school a few weeks ago, and honestly, I want to be an astronaut. Yeah I know it sounds crazy, please don't laugh at me. I've always wanted to be one. But I don't know how to approach it. Out of all the highly eduated peopl who try to be one, how many actually become one? Thank you.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 2, 2005 #2
    I had a friend who went into the Air Force for that specific reason.
    He wound up getting injured though and that pretty much killed any chances of him ever becoming an astronaut. I'm not sure if he had an references or anything else that were going to help him reach his goal but he seemed pretty sure he would get there.

    Just a note.... be very very careful about any dicision regarding enlisting in the military. Be absolutely positive it is what you want and look into other preferable paths to your goal as well.
    I wanted to get that out there just in case. :smile:
  4. Dec 2, 2005 #3
    wow that's horrible. Did he ever to fly? I heard its very tough to get a flying job in the air force. How was he injured?
  5. Dec 2, 2005 #4
    I don't remember how he was injured. I have actually only seen him once since he has been out and that was a couple years ago.

    No he didn't get to fly.
  6. Dec 2, 2005 #5
    I have abolutely no idea about anything to do with this, but I'm comfortable in giving my opinion anyway. If you already graduated then you aren't going to be going to the AF Academy, which I think would have been best. Now I'd say you better excel in college because everything you do would be looked at by NASA. You better have straight As and stay out of trouble. Your second option is probably more reasonable and plausible, kick back and relax because in your lifetime you will be able to purchase an affordable ticket into space.
  7. Dec 2, 2005 #6


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Historically, Navy test pilots actually have a better chance of becoming astronauts than Air Force pilots.

    Regardless, the chances of someone attending an academy becoming a pilot aren't nearly as good as you think, let alone being selected to be a fighter pilot, let alone being one of the fighter pilots selected to be a test pilot, let alone one of the test pilots selected to be an astronaut.

    There's more mission specialists than pilots that become astronauts, anyway. To become a mission specialist, you just need to have a PhD, be considered an expert in your field, and still be young (usually).

    Or, you could win one of those special slots, such as the Teacher in Space program. My sister lasted long enough in that competition to begin doing appearances (they wanted to see how each of the remaining dozen or so candidates handled themselves as a spokesperson for science teachers, etc). Of course, considering that mission exploded after take-off, being a competitive also-ran wound up being better than winning.
  8. Dec 2, 2005 #7
    yeah I should have said get straight As in college and get your PhD, that's what I was getting at.
  9. Dec 2, 2005 #8
    Why would you want to be an astronaut? Why don't you just run away and hide in a dark cave, the priniciple is the same and it's cheaper.
  10. Dec 2, 2005 #9
    no that's Astronuc
  11. Dec 2, 2005 #10


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    :uhh: Anyone else see the challenge there? :rofl:
  12. Dec 2, 2005 #11


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Just as a note, you do not have to be a pilot or even military to be an astronaut. You must graduate from a military test pilot school to be an astronaut-pilot, but mission specialists are not required to have flight experience. That being said, it definitely is a plus and the area of mission specialist trades the lack of military career and flight knowledge with the minimal requirement of a master's degree. Although, I defy you to find anyone with less than a PhD.

    From the NASA website:
    Here's the page with everything you need including the application forms:
  13. Dec 2, 2005 #12


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Oooh, I'm not far off!
  14. Dec 2, 2005 #13
    one small step away?
  15. Dec 2, 2005 #14


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    I used to date a guy at NASA that trained astronauts. I don't remember exactly what he trained them to do.

    Ok, I never asked, I wasn't interested. He was boring and I only went out with him twice. :redface:
  16. Dec 2, 2005 #15
    Astronaut: I've been in outer space, but you are out of this world.
    Evo: Did you walk on the moon?
    Astronaut: well, no. but I was weightless and you leave me breathless.
    Evo: Don't call me, I'll call you, Buck Rogers.

    What does it take if professional athletes and NASA engineers aren't good enough? Do your dates ever get called things like El Presidente? lots of bowing?
  17. Dec 3, 2005 #16

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Of course he was boring. Interesting people are almost always boring.

  18. Dec 3, 2005 #17


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Like i said before... you are a very interesting human being ivan... :tongue2:
  19. Dec 3, 2005 #18


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Believe me...you couldn't be farther. :tongue2:

    BTW...what's a"bunf." I think I already know.
  20. Dec 3, 2005 #19
    Why whould someone laugh at you there's nothing wrong being astronut this a physics fourms website your not the only one who wants to be astronut:smile: If you think Nasa's space ship(http://www.nasa.gov/missions/solarsystem/cev.html) is hight tech then someone whould laugh at you:rofl: .
    You need to collage and get a degree in science or engineering.I whould suggest you joinning Aif force(they do have astronut's in the air froce) you probally whould get alot of the traing you need to become an astronut and you should also learn to be a piolt.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook